Discuss Scout’s fights with Cecil and Francis.  What do their comments suggest about Maycomb as a community?  What does Scout's response reveal about her?

Expert Answers
bmadnick eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Scout is immature, so the only way she knows to react when someone says something ugly is to settle it with her fists. Scout is lively and a bit hot-tempered as well. She has been taught to stand up for what she believes in, even though Atticus hasn't quite accomplished teaching her to do it without violence. Scout is understandably defensive of Atticus, her only parent. With Francis, Scout forgets her promise to Atticus because he insults her father and because she doesn't like Francis much either.

The community of Maycomb represents white society, especially white Southern society. The "n" word is used as a part of their everyday conversation. Southern whites didn't want things to change or anyone to say they are wrong. This is related to the theme of racism. Most of Maycomb is a bigoted society who would rather see Tom found guilty of a crime he didn't committ than consider that a white girl, even if she's from a disreputable family, lied about her rapist.

Read the study guide:
To Kill a Mockingbird

Access hundreds of thousands of answers with a free trial.

Start Free Trial
Ask a Question